F10 Launches a Third Batch
Fifteen entrepreneurs in nine Fintech subsectors have entered F10’s 6-month ‘boot camp’ to become viable enterprises. Eight are Swiss, seven hail from six other countries, three are corporate spinoffs, and all are raring to succeed.
64 startups were interviewed and 15 made the grade: Zürich-based incubator/accelerator F10 took them on for a half-year programme to turn a concept into a company. On 5 March they made their maiden ‘elevator pitches’ in Züri-West to the cheers of over 100 potential investors and customers, and to the cheerleading of F10’s Senior Startup Coach, Dave Bruno.
Who are they? Let’s take them by sub-sector.
DynaMetrics aims to automate lending to small-and-medium-sized companies (SMEs). To loan or not to loan – this is the question. It’s a potential CHF 1 billion+ market in Switzerland, and 17 banks have already joined in testing the Fribourg-firm’s prototype.
Qard is also aimed at SMEs. The Paris-based FinTech plans to complete loans for working capital within 24 hours – that’s from application to funds transfer. Credit scores will be estimated from the debtor’s online presence. Target Insights, a spinoff of Zürich-headquartered Bank Julius Bär, will help automate the generation and proposition of investment ideas. Its target market is private bankers, who would like to devote more time to it, but are often bogged down in compliance and administration.
Estonia-based Basis ID is looking to streamline identity-verification in transactions of financial institutions and governments. The company is using blockchain technology to label all parties with a ‘basic digital key’ that prevents fraud and mistakes in money-transfers.
SiX IoT is bringing the market to connected machines – known as the Internet of Things (IoT). Your refrigerator needs more milk, your printer extra toner, or your Amazon Alexa wants to order something: they can choose from equally-advantaged suppliers through SiX IoT.
Anansi helps SMEs get the right amount of insurance at the right price, and it allows them to update coverage continually as they grow and change. BDEO automates processing of small claims, potentially an $80-billion market worldwide. The company has already launched in Spain, showing that most of claims adjustment can be done online in a social-media kind of style. C2SEC, out of Seattle, wants to protect insurers and their policy owners against cybercrimes, which cost businesses and governments some $500 billion in 2017. The service extends across the risk chain, from assessment to underwriting to management. Luminant Analytics plans to work directly for insurers, mainly automotive and property, to set rates based on deep analysis of risk factors. Safeside aims to offer pure life insurance quotes within 2 minutes of a request (and without a medical exam). Their target market is people undergoing ‘life changes’ such as marriage, home buying or bearing children.
eHyve’s niche is in personal finance – from banking to insurance to budgeting and investing. The Swiss startup is looking to intermediate these services to individuals and end up as the ‘Trip Advisor of personal finance’.
Private Equity reporting
Limited partners are ever more curious as to how their General Partners in private equity are spending their investments. Vestberry aims to automate the increasingly onerous reporting that General Partners are obliged to provide, and to help them use it to improve their own performance.
Picture a student from Country A studying in Country B, who must pay his/her tuition from a bank in Country A. This will typically involve multiple inter-bank transactions, which are complicated, sometimes slow and almost always expensive. Borderless, a New-York-City-based startup, wants to facilitate these as if there were no borders – easily, quickly and cheaply. Their initial market is the $450-billion annual spend of foreign students in the USA.
‘Green’ portfolios are common in the West, but still new to China. Fittingly, a Sino-Swiss startup plans to bridge that gap. Susfinteq plans to offer analysis, robo-advice and investment funds all in a Fintech format.
Basel-based Monday aims to automate bureaucratic, repetitive tasks for micro enterprises (with fewer than 10 employees), thus making going into the office on Mondays more appealing. The spinoff of insurer Baloise has started by automating a familiar task: choosing and purchasing business insurance.